Reversing RA with Shaun

In This Episode You’ll Learn:

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Clint: Thanks for joining me today. We’ve got Shaun on this episode. We’re going to talk about rheumatoid arthritis. Shaun is currently pain-free and drug-free, and we’ve got a great story ahead of us. Good day, Shaun.

Shaun: Good day, Clint. How are you?

Clint: I’m great, mate. Thanks for doing this over Skype. I know we only live a couple hours away but this enables us to use the technology to get this out to people so they can access it in a few different ways.

Shaun: Yup, sounds good.

Clint: Now, mate, we haven’t talked a lot before this call. In fact, you’ve only just given me probably a 30-second summary of where you’re at. So I’m looking forward to hearing this all for the very first time. Why don’t you take us back to when you first got diagnosed with RA, or potentially even earlier, if you had any health conditions that may have predated the diagnosis?

Shaun: Yeah, probably just listening to your podcast and reading your story, I sort of been able to put pieces of the puzzle together. Thinking back, probably 15 years ago, I got diagnosed with gout in my feet. I saw the doctor and he said, “Yeah, you’ve got gout.” And he said to me, “Are you a boozer?” I thought, “Well, if drinking a bottle a week is a boozer, well, I’m a boozer.”

Clint: You have to be a big bottle, right?

Shaun: Yeah, it have to be a big bottle, yeah.

Clint: Fifty-litter bottle.

Shaun: Right. His diagnosis was, “Take the Voltaren. It’s the anti-inflammatories and see if you go with them.” So, of course, I went to the chemist and got the Voltarens and sure enough fixed the problem.

Clint: Yeah, but how long did you take those before you found they’re effective but just didn’t work where  you had stomach troubles? Or did you take them for a long period?

Shaun: Yes, I think I did probably. Not consistently. Only when I had…

Clint: Flare-ups.

Shaun: … flare-ups in my feet, I would take them but… I would take one and it would solve the problem.

Clint: Right, yeah. And how long did you have the gout for? Was it an ongoing thing? Because you said 15 years ago you started to get it. Give us an overview of how that sort of proceeded to develop over the years.

Shaun: Yeah, it was very sort of off and on. Not consistent and then probably later on, probably getting into maybe 2010 and 2011 where I was probably failing in my knees, and then probably getting to 2012. I saw a doctor and he actually did a blood test on me and my wife was with me, and he said, “You’ve got RA.” And we sort of looked at him and my wife said, “Well,” because it was all new to us then. And my wife said, “What can you do about that?” And he sort of looked us in the face and he said, “Oh, well, do you want to go on chemotherapy?”

Clint: Just like that.

Shaun: Yeah, just like, “Do you want to go on chemotherapy?” And we weren’t… Because we relate chemo to cancer, and we looked at him and said, “No,” and he said, “Well, that’s your only option.” And that’s where it was left at. And it was the same thing the anti-inflammatories.

Clint: Well, I’ll just add something to that. When I give my talks now, whenever I get to my first conversation with a rheumatologist I say this is exactly what you said, I was talking about. He said, “Well, the first option for you is going to be methotrexate. It’s a cancer drug. It’s very toxic for your liver so you’re going to need to have blood tests every month because the liver can really find it difficult to tolerate. It’s going to create a lot of toxicity throughout your body so you won’t be able to have kids.” And he said, “It’s going to create an enormous amount of fatigue so you’re going to be exhausted all the time. When would you like to start?” And I said, “Well, although that does sound very attractive I want to think about it for a while.” So it sounds like we had the exact same sort of situation. It’s like, “Here you go. Yes, so let’s go on this chemo stuff immediately.”

Shaun: Yeah, for sure. Yeah.

Clint: So what happened then? So up until this point, I’m creating this picture that you’ve had this pain that’s coming and going from your feet for a good period of 10 years, your knees are starting to hurt a bit, you’ve gone to the rheumatologist, he said, “You’ve got rheumatoid.” Now, did he run blood tests on you or did he just looked at your joints?

Shaun: No, so he’s done the blood tests and he must’ve done the rheumatoid factor and he’s seen it in the blood. And that’s where we left him. That was it. Well, I don’t want to go on chemo drugs so we left it. And then it was sometime after that, it was probably getting into 2013, so just one morning I just woke up in an agony in my groin like I was in pain, and my wife said, “Look, we’ve got to do something about this. You can’t leave it. Something is wrong. So let’s see another doctor.” So we saw another local doctor and he did the same thing. He did this small blood test, and he looked at me and he said, “You’ve got rheumatoid arthritis. You need to do something about it.” Excuse me. “We need to get you to a rheumatologist,” because I was in agony. Excuse me.

Clint: Yeah, no, you’re alright. And so the other doctor, was he sort of surprised that it had been, what, a year or so since another doctor told you that and then you hadn’t taken any action? Was he surprised that you were kind of just doing your own thing without any of the heavy meds?

Shaun: He was in the same practice, like he was in the same building as the other doctor. Yes, so we booked in to see a rheumatologist at Westmead. Of course, you know what they’re like. They’re hard to get into. I was in a lot of pain. He actually made some phone calls and got me in early. And he saw me and he said, “Yeah,” same thing, he looked at me and he said, “Well, you’ve got this for long? You’re going to be on drugs for the rest of your life.” And to me it was a real… it really hit home hard like, yeah, it was getting a cancer diagnosis I supposed.

Clint: Yeah, for sure.

Shaun: He said, “Yeah, we have to hit this hard and fast to stop the progress of it.” And, of course, he put me on… he started me on the methotrexate, he said, “This was probably the best drug to start on, has the most success,” and he started me on as well, I think, sulfasalazine.

Clint: Okay.

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Shaun: I was going back to him monthly to do a regular blood tests. Yeah, I went back to the same, I’ve still got pain and, of course, went through the progress with him, he keep on upping. So he upped the methotrexate, he upped the sulfasalazine and then he introduced the Plaquenil.

Clint: Okay. So at what point, how long was it after you went to that Westmead rheumatologist until you were sort of at the level that you’re now at in your story? Was it about a year that you were like then you’re at high doses of methotrexate and sulfasalazine? You’re about a year?

Shaun: Yeah, so about a year. So I got to the 25mg of methotrexate. He said, “Your body seems to tolerate it pretty well.” I was on four tablets a day of the sulfasalazine, two in the morning, two at night. And I was eventually on the Plaquenil, same thing, two tablets a day.

Clint: Okay. Well, interesting. We’re parallel again. With me, I was put originally on 10mg of methotrexate, and then I went to another rheumatologist for a second opinion thinking that there’s got to be a better answer. But her answers was actually more aggressive and that I was kidding myself being on 10 and the doctor was just bending the rules just to sort of make me feel a little bit happier that my drugs weren’t too bad. And so she said, “You should be immediately upped to 20mg of methotrexate.” So I went back to my other rheumatologist, so with my towel between my legs, realizing that there’s sort of nowhere else to go, he was doing a wonderful job as it turns out. But the methotrexate, which originally helped me reduce at least 50% of my pain in the first couple of months, I found that it wasn’t holding my disease and that I, like you, had to increase the medication until I got to do the maximum dose, tablet form, in Australia which is the 25mg just as you were on. I wasn’t on these other meds but I was only on the methotrexate.

So, okay, it sounds like there was a big change about to happen because I’m looking for this sort of the big turning point. So what was the big turning point? Or did things get more toxic for you before there was a turning point?

Shaun: So eventually I think when I was on that dose I was pain-free, things were good. I found this sprint of methotrexate I would take it during the week, but I found that I had a real downer, like I felt I’d hit a low when I used to take it. Of course, working during the week. So I spoke to him about that and he says, “Well, maybe take it on a Friday evening.” So I took the full dose on the Friday evening, and of course that ruined the Saturday morning. You just didn’t feel like getting up. I was a really slow start to the day.

Clint: Oh, yeah, for sure. For sure. And how was your liver doing with your monthly blood test? Did you ever have to review that medication? Or were you always okay from a liver point of view?

Shaun: Yeah, from a liver point of view he said I seem to tolerate the drug thing well.

Clint: Okay. All right. And so at that point you’re basically the perfect patient. Your rheumatologist has found the ideal medications for you, you’re not getting side effects that they consider to be too severe to take you off the drugs, and you’re pain-free. Now, from a rheumatologist point of view they would be clapping their hands and saying, “You’re in remission. This is perfect.” So what changed? What happened after that?

Shaun: Okay. So probably in 2014, we went on a cruise.

Clint: Yes? I know where this is going. Yeah. I used to work on cruise ships as a comedian.

Shaun: And the same thing, I’m listening to your stories. So we went to New Zealand on a cruise, we did both islands, and so we sailed down to the south.

Clint: Gorgeous, isn’t it?

Shaun: Yeah, it’s beautiful. And, of course, we all know what happens on cruise ships. They cooked breakfast every morning.

Clint: The booze is back. All the food you can eat.

Shaun: Yeah, all the food you can eat, a bottle of wine every night. Still feeling good. Walking around and no pain. Oh, also, the rheumatologist, he said, “Get rid of the Voltarens.” He put me on the Naproxen. He said, “Look, only take them when you really have to.” So if I was in pain, “Look, take them as an emergency.”

Clint: Yeah, and I’m wondering why. What was his rationale? Was it to do with the gout?

Shaun: Yeah, I don’t know.

Clint: Not sure?

Shaun: Yeah, so he said, “Only take them when you have to. Don’t take them regularly.”

Clint: Yeah, it’s a good advice to take them sparingly as you need to. I just wondered why he wanted you from that brand to the other. It doesn’t matter. Keep going.

Shaun: And then we got to this street. I think it’s a bit like your cherry moment. I call it my Baldwin Street moment.

Clint: Baldwin Street, you say.

Shaun: Yes, so in the south island, I think it’s in Dunedin, is this called the steepest street in the southern hemisphere.

Clint: Oh, right.

Shaun: You walk up this street and, of course, when you walk down the street you get a certificate and you get to the bottom.

Clint: Really.

Shaun: So my wife is like, “Would you be right walking up this street? It’s awful.” I said, “Yeah, no problem. I can walk up this street.” So I walked up the street, and I got about halfway and I said, “I’m starting to feel pain in my knees.”

Clint: Oh, my God.

Shaun: Yeah, and then we walked down, and I got to the bottom and I could feel the pain. I said, “Look, I shouldn’t have done this walk.”

Clint: Okay.

Shaun: So I got back on the cruise and from then on… so it was a two-week cruise. That was the end of it for me. So I thought, “Well, I had the Naproxen.” So I started taking the Naproxens. No result. Absolutely nothing. Then it was, of course on the cruise, they have the people doing their acupuncture.

Clint: Oh, yup.

Shaun: My wife said, “Look, why don’t you give it a go?” So I did the acupuncture, and she said to me, “How do you feel? Relaxed and all that?” I said, “No.” All these tension. I said, “It’s not for me.”

Clint: Yeah, when you’re not well on a cruise ship it’s one of the most claustrophobic, most terrible feelings that you can have because you can’t get off. There’s no way that you can seek quality medical care. You can’t do anything. You’re stuck out on those ships. And that was one of the reasons why I loathe them. I would nearly break down in tears having to leave my wife to go on one of these cruise ships because I just felt so exposed to the food and so under-protected if I needed some kind of help. It’s not a comforting place to be when you’re in pain.

Shaun: No, no.

Clint: Okay. So did you get off the ship? I know that I’ve had experiences with some fellow passengers on the ship that had to be flown back through various unrelated matters, had to be flown back to their home and all sorts of stuff. I’ve seen helicopters arrive. Yeah, all sorts of stuff. But did you stay on the ship until the end of its natural life?

Shaun: Yeah, I stayed on the ship. Yeah, I sort of managed to hovel around. So I got back home. The other GP he’d gone back to the U.K. so I went to another practice and saw another doctor. He sent me for X-rays and he sort of gave me another variation of the Naproxen, a different dosage.

Clint: So this was just the GP.

Shaun: Yeah, just a GP. And he sort of said to me, after the X-rays, he looked at the X-rays, he said, “Gee, there’s nothing I can do for you.” I think I did about two visits back to him within a few weeks. Now we’re getting fairly close to Christmas at this stage. He says, “You’re going to have to go back to a rheumatologist,” so he wrote a referral and said, “Look, see him.” I just thought I’d come back home and my wife said, “I’m not going to be able to see… it’s Christmas.” I know how hard it is to see him. And I thought I’m not going to be able to get into seeing him.

Clint: Right.

Shaun: And she just said, “What are we going to do?” So I was just in agony, and of course I was sitting around and I’ve searched the web.

Clint: Sometimes we do.

Shaun: Yeah, that’s when I come across your program. I came across it in another website. Is it Health Unlocked or something?

Clint: Health Unlocked has a lot of threads about us because obviously a lot of people have rheumatoid arthritis on Health Unlocked, and there’s a lot of communication that goes on. Yeah, a lot of those people are doing the program and they post their successes, and so it’s good because it acts as a way of people to become aware of our program which is really good.

Shaun: Yes, so it must’ve been…I found your website. I downloaded your story and I just sat there and I just read it and thought of… I ticked the boxes and thought, “Oh, that’s me, that’s me.” I hadn’t been through like the operations that you went through. I was like, “Oh, thank God that I haven’t [inaudible [00:18:52].”

Clint: That’s right. Okay. So this is really getting interesting now. And so just before we move on, you’re still on the maximum tablet dose methotrexate, sulfasalazine. You’re still taking your, what was it, Plaquenil, and you’re also on your daily painkillers. So you’re really medicated to the hilt, and you’re looking at this Paddison Program wondering, “Is this going to work?”

Shaun: Yes. And really at that stage I thought I’d come back home to my wife and I said, “Look, I’m going to give this a go. I’ve got actually nothing to lose. I’m going to do this through the weekend detox.” So, yeah, I did… got the… and we have one those juicer, it’s the Breville Juicer.

Clint: You already had one?

Shaun: Already had one. I knew it was sitting up in the back of the cupboard.

Clint: So you dusted it off.

Shaun: Yeah, dusted it off and thought, “Oh, let’s give this thing a go.” Yeah, got the celery and the ginger. I avoided the cucumber. Cucumber always seem to have a repetition of my stomach.

Clint: Oh, okay. Yeah.

Shaun: So, yeah, on the weekend I’ve decided to do it. On the Sunday I said to my wife, “This is working like I could feel reduction in pain.” Yeah, I did the Sundays well. Going to the toilet I tell you what, it was a real clean out. I said to everybody, “Don’t go in the bathroom.”

Clint: It probably smelt just as bad from all the toxins as what it did anything else, yeah.

Shaun: To see it. From then I thought, “Wow, incredible.”

Clint: Right. And then you moved on to the more of the baseline foods, right? After the cleanse you started eating more of the foods from Days 3 to 12. You know what I’m talking about?

Shaun: Yes, I stuck to the grains. Yes, so virtually for that 12-day program the pain was reducing. Like I couldn’t believe it.

Clint: Okay. And then so what next? Let’s hear it unfold.

Shaun: Yes, so then I started doing introducing more foods. I really stuck to the celery. I sort of look to the celery as the healing. Religiously I have the celery every morning.

Clint: Yeah, that’s cool.

Shaun: Yeah, because I knew it was doing something.

Clint: Yeah, that’s great.

Shaun: Yeah, my wife said to me, she goes, “Oh, how are you going to live just living on grains?” She was sort of thinking, “What am I going to cook for you?”

Clint: Yeah, yeah.

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Shaun: And I said to her at that stage, I said, “Look, if I’m just going to drink celery juice for the rest of my life, I will.”

Clint: That’s right. It’s easy, right, compared to the other option.

Shaun: Yeah, and it’s like that song on pleasure and pain. It was an easy decision like, “I just don’t want this pain anymore.”

Clint: Right. So you kept this up for a period of time and then you’re still on all these medications at this point. So talk me through the period between starting the program and your first change of medications.

Shaun: Yes, I think it was about April the following year, I had an appointment with a rheumatologist. I didn’t go back to see him because the pain, it was just reducing from the change of diet. So I think it was about April that I had to see him from that Christmas period.

Clint: Yeah, so it’s about four months you made this Paddison Program.

Shaun: Changes, yes. So I probably did the wrong thing. I decided to reduce my own medication.

Clint: Oh, did you?

Shaun: So by the time I saw him again I got rid of the Plaquenil. But as you said in your program I was also getting my blood test done. So I went back to my GP, I asked him for the blood test.

Clint: Awesome.

Shaun: And I got the benchmarks.

Clint: So you knew that you weren’t just doing things on whim because you were looking at the bloods yourself, and although it’s not something that either of us recommend or say is the right thing to do, at least you knew that lowering the medications yourself, you were watching what was happening to the inflammation in your blood, so you knew that things were still under control.

Shaun: Yes.

Clint: Okay. So you took yourself off Plaquenil?

Shaun: Yes.

Clint: Okay. And then?

Shaun: I told my GP that I did that.

Clint: All right. Yup.

Shaun: And so he sort of said, “Yeah, the inflammation markers were going down.”

Clint: Awesome.

Shaun: Yeah, so when I went back to the rheumatologist, I walked into his office and he sort of said, “How are you, Shaun?” I said, “I’m fantastic.” He goes, “Oh, tell me about it.” I said, “Well, I’m on a journey.” And he goes, “Well, okay, tell me about this journey.” So I told him. I didn’t tell him that I was on your program. I told him the dietary changes that I’ve made and what I was eating and, of course, same results. Well, food has very little to do with the disease. Anyway, he sort of looked at the bloods again and went, “Hmm, hmm.” And virtually at the end of the consultation, he said, “It looks like we’re on this journey together.”

Clint: How about that? Well, it’s awesome.

Shaun: Yeah, and so he said, “Because now you’ve made the changes…” Actually I think I did reduce the methotrexate as well. I think it dropped it down to about 20mg of methotrexate. And he sort of then said then, “Well, let’s start reducing…” I think we reduced the sulfasalazine, and he said, “Well, let’s reduce this.” But he sort of said, “Look, if you do get the pain back, well, just go back on to it.”

Clint: See, I love that approach. I think that approach is fantastic because he’s giving you an opportunity to lower the drugs that have the severe side effects if you’re over-medicated. We don’t want to be over-medicated. And if you’re not showing the inflammation you just don’t need as higher dose, and so your rheumatologist seems exactly like mine was, and he used exactly the same approach, “Look, if your blood tests are fantastic then we can lower your medications because you do have something going on in parallel that is helping.” Yeah. So you went away from that feeling probably pretty good, right?

Shaun: Yeah, real good. Yes, so he made another appointment. I think I also sort of had my own regime then. Actually in my mind I thought, now by the end of the year, at the end of 2015, I’m going to be off all drugs. That’s what I put in my mind. That was my goal.

Clint: Okay. So you set the goal.

Shaun: I’m going to do it. Yes, so I sort of had my own little regime. I thought, “He might’ve said drop off 5mg.” Well, I dropped the methotrexate 10mg. Then I was still going back to my GP and I was actually asking him for blood tests, so I was still monitoring it and monitoring it, and I was telling my GP what I was doing too. So I told him and he sort of said, “Well, it seems to be working.”

Clint: Yup, fantastic. Okay. So looking forward to hearing if you went back to the rheumatologist again. Did you go back and see him again?

Shaun: Yup, saw him again. I told him what I had done and he’s sort of went, “Yup, okay,” and he sort of said, “Well, yeah, let’s keep reducing it.” So it started on 2016, I was off all drugs. Saw him at the beginning of the year and he went, “Oh, it looks like you’re in remission.” And I think my CRP was down under one easy.

Clint: Yeah, that’s the key, isn’t it? Well, first of all, that is absolutely just the greatest story. From the drugs you’re on right down to a CRP of less than one on drugs, that’s basically the Holy Grail of healing, isn’t it? Hitting below one on your CRP on drugs. Did he say anything to you at that point? Like, “Maybe you’re onto something here, Shaun. Maybe I should take some notes and share with everyone I know.”

Shaun: No, no, he put me in a category, he says, “You’re one of a few. You’re in the minority.” So he just sort of thought, “Well, lucky you.”

Clint: Lucky you. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s funny that you get lucky when you’re putting in an unbelievable amount of effort.

Shaun: Yeah.

Clint: Yeah. And so we’re recording this. It’s August 2016, so that was about six months ago. So you haven’t been on any medications and you’ve had no pain for six months?

Shaun: No, probably actually when I did see him in the early days and he’d do the feeling of the feet and felt all over my body, actually that was the other thing too is, and I’m going back in history. Probably the same things 15 years ago, I had this nodule on my elbow. I forget what the GP said, he gave me some… he said, “We’ll send you through this ultrasound treatment to blast it away.”

Clint: All right.

Shaun: And when I did, in the early days, when the rheumatologist felt my body, he felt the lump on my elbow, and he said, “Oh, how long have you had that for?” And I said, “Oh, about 15 years ago.” He goes, “Did you see the doctor?” And I said, “Yeah, I’ve seen about it,” and told him the story. And he goes, “Well, that’s one of the early signs back then,” like I had it. He said that’s the typical nodule.

Clint: Wow.

Shaun: Yeah. And I told him about the gout, and he said to me, “Oh, was your toes inflamed really red?” And I said, “No, they weren’t.” And he says, “No, you didn’t have gout.” The rheumatologist said that. So really, I had a period of years of misdiagnosis.

Clint: Wow.

Shaun: Yeah.

Clint: Hmm, interesting. Which even makes your achievement even more substantial and significant. If you’ve had the potential of having the disease for far longer than you actually realized, that’s just at a very low level for maybe those that sort of 10 to 12 years before it really started to rear its ugly head.

Shaun: Yes, and my life visit this rheumatologist, he felt the nodule in my arm and he went… and I hadn’t felt it. I hadn’t bothered with it. And he goes, “Oh, that’s reducing in size.” And I went, “Oh, is it?” “Yeah, it’s going down.” And the same thing, he felt… at one stage I couldn’t clench my fist like I had this in my hand, it was like I couldn’t. And shaking someone’s hand, I couldn’t do it. I actually feared shaking people’s hands because of the squeezing of the hands. But now I can do it, clench my fist tight. The other thing too, the wedding ring, I had to take off my wedding ring because I just couldn’t put it on my fingers. So, yeah, it’s fantastic.

Clint: Oh, mate. That’s just brilliant. Yes. And so what about your family? Have they implemented into their lives any of the healthy changes that you have?

Shaun: Oh, my wife gradually, like she can see the benefits. So, yeah, she also we like the same food but…

Clint: Yeah. Okay. That’s great. But most of all, mostly you were doing a lot of it on your own.

Shaun: Yes.

Clint: Yeah, okay. And now are you able to… have you reintroduced lots of foods now? Are you able to tolerate things that previously may have caused you pain?

Shaun: I think with my body too is like sort of… you sort of veer off track a little bit, you might try something. Actually thinking back, I was probably a big coffee drinker. I’d probably have the Audi coffee machines, the pods.

Clint: Yeah, right.

Shaun: I probably was doing about four pods a day, and actually I thought that would’ve been the hardest thing to kick, but it wasn’t. I just stopped it.

Clint: Yeah, that’s good. I’m glad you mentioned that. I’m so anti-coffee. It’s just one of the worst things for the body especially if you’re borderline gout. Like let’s say, for instance, that it was gout, just to help my argument here. The coffee drinking is so acidifying for the body, and of course gout is so heavily related to the acid levels in the fluid in the body. So if you’ve got a chronic acidosis going on in the body, you almost certainly are either drinking a lot of alcohol or a lot of coffee. So it’s great that you stopped that. That’s going to protect you indefinitely from getting gout again if you’re eating the sort of things that you know that I always talk about, and you’re doing your celery juices and you’re not on coffee. It’s hard to get gout without having a terrible diet.

Shaun: Yeah. So probably the sugar addiction is probably the thing, the chocolate.

Clint: And so do you feel that you’ve now found your happy balance where you found a way that you can eat that you find protective and safe and healthy? And then the things that you like and you minimize them so that you know that you can stay on the road.

Shaun: Yes. So I think when I do have something, and if it’s wrong, I think it gives me a little… I don’t get the pain but you get that twinge in the knee. You go, “Oh, I shouldn’t have had that.” And as you’ve said it’s maybe the oils which I probably didn’t fully get rid of the all the oils but I’m finding that recently like certain oily foods.

Clint: Absolutely.

Shaun: Oily foods give me a twinge like, “Oh, okay.”

Clint: Yup, that’s going to be your number one enemy. Everyone, without exception, it’s just the oils have to be completely avoided. I like the fact that your body responds the way it should. When you’ve got a rheumatoid arthritis diagnosis, and you eat oils, you’re going to have pain. I don’t know an exception to that. I’ve never met someone with an exception to that. So it’s good because when a body is predictable it’s improvable, if that’s a word. So that’s great.

Well, Shaun, that’s a fabulous story and I just think that this is going to be really interesting for a lot of people to listen to. And I wonder, did you… Just before we wrap up, I want to maybe think of a few more things to ask you that people might be wondering. Did you change your exercise habits at all?

Shaun: Oh, no. That’s probably where actually the guilt. I work out at Gray Stein’s Way[SP]. I drive and I take the Crumbled Highway. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that part of town.

Clint: I do. Yeah, coming up near Hornsby, you bend around rather than coming around the Pacific Highway.

Shaun: Yes, so west kind of hills, busiest place that says Bikram Yoga, and I drive past that, and I’d looked at it, and, “Let’s see how the diet goes first.

Clint: That’s right. That’s right. You’d probably heard me talking about how it’s not easy. It’s not easy and it’s not something that anyone looks forward to. I don’t think that it bloody gets results, we know that. So did you do it?

Shaun: No, I didn’t do it. I think I was probably lucky that I had such a success with the diet. I think I would’ve gone to that stage like I thought, “Okay, this is now the next part of the journey, like another destination to go to.” And before this podcast I was… I thought, look, early on in your program I sort of… I looked for Bikram up here, up on the Coast to go to but there wasn’t anything. And actually I found recently that there’s one starting in [inaudible [00:38:30].

Clint: Oh, that’s great. I didn’t know that.

Shaun: So I’m thinking about it now. I thought, “Well, I’ve got some movement in my joints.” I thought I just don’t want to go back to that dark place.

Clint: Oh, that’s right. Yeah, yeah, yeah, that’s great news that they’ve got one up there. You say that if they have got one up there then, yeah, go and check it out. And even if you just go once a week, as almost just sort of a maintenance thing, it’s so reassuring to have a class nearby that you can go to for maintenance. I went yesterday. It’s just so great just to go. It’s like basically getting your body serviced from head to toe comprehensively. It’s hard. It’s unpleasant but, boy, it’s just like getting your body serviced. That’s amazing.

Shaun: Yeah, I was seriously thinking about giving it a go.

Clint: Yeah, that’s great. Because the stronger that the connective tissues are around the joints, and the better that your joints move in terms of range of motion, it improves the joint and therefore it’s less likely to become afflicted with inflammation again. Because a healthy moving joint is a harder joint to pin down with inflammation. So it’s a good preventative measure as well as a good restorative thing to do.

Shaun: Yeah, I wouldn’t mind losing a few kilos at the same time.

Clint: Yeah, it’ll help with that as well.

Shaun: And when I did start your program I think I did lose about probably six kilograms of weight.

Clint: Was that welcomed?

Shaun: Yes, it was welcomed.

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Clint: Yeah, well, you’re looking great. From the chest up that I can see on Skype you don’t need to lose anything. But that’s great. Any other tips that you thought that were a bit unique or a little strange that you found might be useful for anyone else? Or some mindset things, maybe some ways of thinking about the whole process that would help others going through it.

Shaun: I can’t remember where you mentioned it, but you sort of said about your bowel movements before going to bed, and making sure that you do get that bowel movement out. Yeah, I started doing that and I think that’s something. And I probably I could have up to three to four bowel movements a day.

Clint: Yeah, which is normal because you’re meant to have a bowel movement corresponding roughly to every meal that you eat. Again, it’s like when you see the snakes eat their large meals and you see the actual food moving through the snake. That’s the same, we’ve got like… when we consume a meal it moves through us and gets to the other end, and out we go. So there should be three movements a day to match each meal. And sometimes others because sometimes we don’t properly eliminate when we go to the toilet. We’re in a hurry or we’re thinking about other things or whatever, and so you kind of… it’s not as clean as what it would be in theory. But what you’re referring to, people are wondering, is that there can be a situation, and I experienced it obviously because I just talked about it, is that I would find if I went to bed at night, and I wasn’t fully evacuated, or hadn’t been to the toilet, then I’d have more pain in the morning. And I was getting what I felt was toxic reabsorption. I felt like the fecal matter in my bowels was contributing by allowing more bacteria to get back into my bloodstream because of this toxic reabsorption.

And I found, as you’re telling me that you found, that making sure you went to bed with empty bowels you woke up feeling better. And I used to go at lengths sometimes to ensure that by using home enema kits to totally clear out my back side before bed. And the next morning, bang, I felt great. So that’s what I used to do to make sure that I’d go to bed without sitting there… I’m sorry, without full bowel.

Shaun: Yeah, wow. I’ve been going to that extent.

Clint: Right, but you’ve had this same general feeling which is really interesting.

Shaun: Yeah, and same thing, wake up in the morning and no stiffness. Going thinking back now, in the morning it could’ve taken me up to 45 minutes to sort of get some movement in your body. Now, I can sort of get up. I wake up quite early because I commute. Yeah, I’m back on track, back on routine.

Clint: Yeah, that’s awesome.

Shaun: Going on that traffic on that N2 or N1.

Clint: That’s right. That’s right. Rush out of bed so you can sit in the car.

Shaun: Yeah.

Clint: Yeah, okay.

Shaun: That’s why I would tune in to listen to your podcast.

Clint: Oh, great. Great. Great. Anything else? Because your story is so good. I don’t want to let you go just yet, unless we think of anything else that might be helpful because your results are so great. You’ve obviously learnt how to get this right.

Shaun: Yeah, I think my body has changed from a fire alarm to a smoke alarm. Yeah, and friends would ask. Like I told friends my story and they said, “Oh, I can’t understand like I couldn’t do it,” they’d say. I said, “Look, when you’re in so much pain you can do it, because I couldn’t have done it but it was just I had to make… I had to do something.”

Clint: Yeah. Well, that’s a great little statement to finish on. You had to do something. And so I think people listening to this on the fence, whether or not they should make the changes, yes, you have to do something. When you got to the point where you had Baldwin Street incident and you couldn’t walk up the street, the knees started, your body said, “Look, enough is enough. Do anything it takes, Shaun. Get yourself out of this situation.”

Shaun: Yeah, just do it.

Clint: Just do it.

Shaun: Yeah, figure it out. I think about the pain and the pleasure of eating the eggs and bacon.

Clint: That’s right. It’s that whole saying that I use a lot which is, “It’s the pain of discipline versus the pain of regret.” Because we’re always going to have pain whether it be the physical pain or the pain of discipline. And it takes effort, it takes time. It costs money to go and buy these organic sometimes foods, or just buying lots of greens. It takes a lot of commitment but with that comes results and that’s what we’ve got to focus on.

Shaun: Yeah, it’s results and it just shows in the blood, it shows in the pain levels. Yeah, the results. Yeah, thanks very much for your program because, yeah, I don’t know where I’d be.

Clint: Yeah, you’re welcome. Thanks for coming on and sharing your story with us, Shaun. I really appreciate it.

Shaun: Yeah, your seminar that you had with Dr. Klaper is just an eye-opener. And Dr. McDougall and things. It’s just sort of a big… it’s just a life-changing event.

Clint: Well, that’s what we feel. I feel that if I speak to enough people who’ve got stories like you, and continue to share them with enough people that all of us together can have a strong enough voice to be able to educate the people who were meant to be dishing out the information to help us.

Shaun: Yeah, that’s what they’re looking at. They’re looking at the results and signs, aren’t they?

Clint: Yeah, yeah, that’s it. Nothing beats results. So you know what, I used to work in a fiber optic industry. I’ve got a laser physics degree. So before I got into standup comedy, would you believe I was a laser physicist? And I had a hundred staff working for me when I was only 24 years old in a fiber optic fiber-grade manufacturing firm here in Sydney. Our factory was opened by the then Prime Minister John Howard, so we were contributing so much to exports in this country. Our little factory of 350 staff, we were just making a monster as a little company here selling components to build the internet, so that’s what we were doing.

And my point of this was sometimes the technical sales managers would come to me and say, “Why, would these adjustments to these manufacturing methods, are we getting better results? Are we getting more manufacturing, more throughput and high yield on our manufacturing?” And I’d explained to them why we did it, and they said, “But how does it work?” And I said, “Actually I’m not sure but you can’t argue with the results, right?” All the testing was right, it complied with all the testing and everything in just some small… we couldn’t explain some things. We’re talking a nanoscopic level of measurement but the results are there, and let’s not try and work out what the atomic physics is. It just works and so we just have to run with it. Sometimes we don’t know but you can’t beat the results and the results is all that matters.

Shaun: That’s right.

Clint: All right. I went off on a little bit of a tangent there. But thanks so much again, and let’s stay in touch maybe down the track. I’m thinking of doing some more Q&A sessions to be able to help some members, and maybe one day I might have you on to help out and answer a few questions for people who might want some help and might be wanting to ask you a few questions yourself.

Shaun: Yeah, no problem. Sweet, yeah. Just here, just help. We all understand the pain what everyone is going through. So, yeah, where I can help someone it would be just great.

Clint: Awesome. Okay. Well, thanks so much, Shaun.

Shaun: All right. Okay. Thanks very much, Clint.

Clint Paddison

Clint Paddison has recovered from crippling Rheumatoid Arthitis and now assists others with this disease via the Paddison Program for Rheumatoid Arthritis, the Paddison Podcast and the blogs on www.paddisonprogram.com